Tryon’s inaugural Beer Fest held Nov. 10

Published 9:14 am Monday, October 22, 2012

With the inaugural Tryon Beer Fest, the town will become one of more than 1,300 places in the United States to have a beer festival.
The first-ever event of its kind in the area will be held Nov. 10, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Tryon Depot Plaza between North Trade Street and Pacolet Street. The festival theme is “Tap Into Tryon!”
Beer festivals reflect the interest in the growing national trend toward small brewing companies, microbreweries and brewpubs that first emerged in the 1980s. The idea was picked up from the United Kingdom, where brewers in the 1970s successfully marketed ales made in casks rather than beers produced in massive vats.
Today there are an estimated 2,075 “craft” breweries in the United States while the three major breweries in the country (none of which are US owned) still sell the preponderance of beer by volume, mostly mild-tasting lagers.
Small brewing companies thrive due to a nation’s desire for quality and diversity in their beverage of choice even though cost might be slightly higher. For this reason the beer festival has proliferated to showcase dozens up to 100 craft beers in one place. This allows a person to sample a range of beers to find one or more that agrees with his or her taste without having to purchase six full bottles of each.
Of the country’s craft breweries, about 800 are labeled as microbreweries. To maintain classification as a microbrewery, annual production must not exceed 15,000 barrels. A barrel contains 31 U.S. gallons. There are also 90 or so regional craft breweries that produce slightly larger quantities but in general do not have national distribution.
Another category of beer maker is the brewpub. While some may offer beer-to-go, the brewery is on-premise, usually associated with an attached restaurant. In Germany, for example, some brewpubs have been in business for more than 100 years. There are approximately 1,100 brewpubs in the United States. Most brands of this beer do not come bottled to you; you have to go to it.
The Tryon Beer Fest will provide attendees an opportunity to sample at least one dozen craft beers with the price of admission. Tickets are limited and only those 21 years or older will be admitted to the event.
The Foothills Oompah band, a group of seasoned entertainers who play a broad range of lively, audience-engaging music, will provide free entertainment. Also on the stage and occasionally roving, will be accordion player Charlie Laughter, willing to play audience requests.
The food fare will fit with the festivities: bratwurst and kielbasas along with authentic German potato salad and Bavarian sauerkraut. Large, soft pretzels from the Greenville Pretzel Factory will also be available. Soft drinks and water will be on hand for designated drivers, who will be admitted for half-price.
Tickets may be purchased at Tryon House and La Bouteille Wine and Beer Boutique on North Trade Street in Tryon and at Kathleen’s in Saluda. Tickets may also be purchased on-line by visiting
The same website provides prospective attendees with more details of the event, which is undertaken by the Tryon Downtown Development Association. Proceeds will be applied to projects that beautify the downtown and make Tryon even more appealing as a place to live and do business. Many area businesses are sponsors of the event and volunteers are still needed. Interested persons should visit the website.
– article submitted by Dan Trumble

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